As the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare strides to prevent the spread of the Ebola virus in Liberia, the Health Promoters’ Network of Liberia (HPNL), a local NGO focused on providing awareness on improved health, has committed itself to help the Health Ministry disseminates those tips for prevention of contracting the Ebola virus.
The Government of Liberia, through the Ministries of Health and Social Welfare (MoSHW) and Information, Culture and Tourism, along with the World Health Organization (WHO) office in Liberia, has confirmed that at least two of seven blood samples that it sent to Guinea and Lyon, France, came back positive with the deadly Ebola virus.
Those two samples, according to Health Ministry’s authorities, were from sisters, one of which has since died from the virus, which has a case fatality rate of 90 percent.
Health and Social Welfare Minister, Dr. (MD) Walter T. Gwenigale, had disclosed on Monday, March 31st, that the other sister of the deceased, travelled from Foya, Lofa County down to Monrovia before heading for Harbel, Margibi County the next day. He clarified that when it came to the attention of the health authorities, they managed to find her and most of those she interacted with and quarantined them so as to prevent the spread of the virus.
The health promoters’ organization has said it will partner with the Government through the Health Ministry, to provide educational messages that help prevent the spread of the Ebola virus, which has no cure to date but can be prevented when the population is adequately informed.
HPNL is calling on international and local health partners to provide the needed support to the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare to prevent the spread of the virus.
The Health Promoters’ Network, has also called on all civil society groups, faith-based organizations, community-based organizations, including youth groups, community and traditional leaders to help provide awareness across Liberia.
The network said in the wake of the outbreak of the virus, it stands ready to work with the reactivated National Task Force on Health, to carry out outreaches and sensitizations across the country.
HPNL urged everyone within our borders to adhere to those preventive actions such as do not eat animals that are found dead in the bush, and avoid contacts with fruit bats, monkeys, chimpanzees, antelopes and porcupines. Limit as much as possible, direct contact with body fluids of infected persons or dead persons. Wash your hands with soap and water as frequently as possible. Treat your water with chlorine before drinking.
The Health Promoters’ Network is dedicated to promoting and advocating for various health issues on the prevention of communicable and other diseases as well as maternal and child mortality in Liberia.
Meanwhile, the Health Ministry, in its April 2, update on the situation in the country, has reported seven new suspected cases of the virus, pending laboratory confirmation. “The figure includes two deaths and five are probable cases,” the Ministry’s update said.
The Ministry further said as of March 24, 14 suspected Ebola cases have been reported and there are no new confirmed cases of the Ebola virus disease in Liberia and that the confirmed cases still remain at two. The Ministry’s hotline numbers including 0770198517, 0777549805, 0886530260 and 0886549805 are still active for people to call and report any suspected Ebola case(s).